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187863969 / Thomas Barwick

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

NewsCred has teamed up with Getty


Images to bring you the four principles
of visual storytelling authenticity,
sensory, relevancy & archetype.
In this day and age, a picture is worth more than just a thousand words.
When its genuine, when its relevant yet eternal, when its so powerful
that it goes beyond sight and delves into your senses thats the kind
of image thats worth a million. And it only takes an instant to read.
How can your visuals tell an epic story?

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

2014 NewsCred
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Photography courtesy of Getty Images

authenticity

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sensory

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archetype

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relevancy

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166267070 / Winterbabies Photography by Karen Macias

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

169874099 / ReeldealHD

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

Never before has the human race been


better at spotting a fake. Getty Images
Director of Visual Trends, Pam Grossman,
confirms: The viewers eye has become
a lot more sophisticated, and what it
wants above all is something real.

129748349 / Oliver Rossi

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Articles that contain images get 94% more views than articles without.
Source: jeffbullas.com/2012/05/28/6-powerful-reasons-whyyou-should-include-images-in-your-marketing-infographic

In the age of the selfie, people want something that speaks to


them personally. Images that come off as constructed, airbrushed,
or posed no longer resonate. People want the unpredictable, but
familiar at the same time. They want real, candid moments from
everyday life. Moments that speak to the human experience.

Thats the kind of connection that secures a strong and stable bond.
Authenticity taps into the passions and emotions of an audience,
letting them see something of themselves in the images and turning
them into eager advocates of the story youre trying to tell. Usergenerated content (UGC) reveals real people and places, meaning real
moments and emotions that establish a new kind of heightened
digital intimacy.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

So, how do you select authentic images for your brand?


First of all, keep it honest. It may sound obvious, but there
is tangible proof that real rules. According to the Wall Street
Journal, Olapic co-founder Jose de Cabo discovered that...

Users clicking on photos of


real life people are twice as
likely to convert to a sale.
Thats something any marketer can get on board with.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

The aesthetics of UGC authenticity,


openness, the everyday tap into
strong and important ideas... through
the realness of slice-of-life images,
brands show that they understand you,
your life and concerns.
Micha Schwing, Getty Images Director of Content Strategy

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

Dove has long embraced authenticity


in their brand campaigns.

By now, were all familiar with Doves Real Beauty


campaign, which continues to celebrate the true
beauty of real-life women and girls as well as
its tenth birthday this year.
Few brands have been able
to so seamlessly master the
art of authenticity, much less
keep it going for so long. In
2006, long before the topic
was on the tip on everyones
tongues, Dove launched its
Evolution YouTube video, which illustrates the
transformation a model undergoes from start to
finish: makeup, airbrushing and all. A caption reads,
No wonder our perception of beauty is distorted,
which introduces the importance of a more
authentic paradigm.

At the end of the day,


authenticity is about getting
it right for your audience.

The brands latest video effort is called Patches,


and features a group of women who undergo
a two-week experiment in which they apply a
beauty patch to boost their looks and selfperception. The result? Happy, confident ladies,
who are shocked to find out that the secret
ingredient of those patches is nothing. Creating
something that needs nothing to evoke powerful
results sums up the power of authenticity. What
started with a simple bar of soap has transformed
into a brand bent on revolutionizing the way
women perceive beauty and themselves. Thats a
brand we can get behind, and one that cares about
whats real and whats not.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Key takeaways

Articulate your brand


personality. Select images
that amplify your voice.

Learn what resonates,


and constantly align your
strategy to match.

Before you can select an image


that conveys authenticity, you must
first lay out what is authentic
to your brand. What is your brand
purpose? What is your mission?
Who are you talking to? Once you
define the core pillars of your
brand and voice, these principles
can become an authenticity filter
that you run all of your selected
images through.

As you integrate visual content


into your strategy, look at what
resonates. What posts get the
most shares and clicks from your
target audience? What is the
subject matter and style of those
photos? This will help guide your
visual content selection based on
what resonates with those you are
trying to reach.

3
Keep it relatable.
While celebrity photos
work, always balance
them with images that
form a connection with
the viewer.
When selecting visuals,
leveraging images that feel
candid help build your brand
identity in a more human way.
If you are using images of
celebrities across social channels
and on your website, make sure
you are also including images
of real people that embody your
brand as well.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

1B05370_0053 / BBC Natural History

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NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

We spend our lives almost entirely


online, but most of us have had it up
to here with digital. People want to cut
through the screen, and let themselves
be engulfed by visceral experiences.

474613519 / Jodie Griggs

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NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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40% of people will respond better to visual information than plain text.
Source: webmarketinggroup.co.uk/Blog/why-every-seo-strategy-needs-infographics-1764.aspx

We want zoomed in, we want high detail; wrinkles, textures


the nitty-gritty. We want to go beyond pixels, we want to smell
and touch. A striking image strikes for just that very reason.
The more senses a visual is able to engage, the more attention it
receives and the more information is retained. Our minds are full
of an endless visual library, one that influences everything we see
and how we see it. All-encompassing visceral exposure draws on
a viewers memories, past sensations and experiences, building
stronger connections in the brain.

Our culture has succumbed to information overload, but our senses


still yearn to be stimulated. What happens to real meaning in an
age of digital excess? Technology has developed around us at such
a break-neck pace that few have had a chance to catch their breath.
But there is a growing clarion call to return from where we came
we want the feel of handmade, we want the details of the precious
moments of our everyday lives. We want whats real or at least,
what feels real.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

Can you taste the yolk of this egg?

168066978 / Dean Belcher

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NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

Can you hear the traffic of Times Square?

451834035 / Michael H

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NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Can you smell the fragrance of these lilies?

105471783 / Adrian Samson

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

Were fatigued by how digital life has


become, says Grossman. Our culture
has become driven by information
overload, but our senses still yearn
to be stimulated. What happens to
meaning in an age of digital excess?
Pam Grossman, Getty Images Director of Visual Trends

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NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Squarespace has put Sensoryevoking imagery at the heart of


their visual brand identity.
Squarespace does a fantastic job of engaging all five senses with its
new yearlong (and aptly named) campaign, Details. The video features
stunning close-ups and sound bytes of the very things that fuel the
various creative individuals who choose Squarespace as their web
platform. Water flowing over purple cauliflower
and orange kiwano, mascara-clad batting
eyelashes, reverberating bass strings, the repetitive
precision of a sewing machines needle and thread:
the viewer sees all of these visuals starting at
maximal zoom and ending at how gorgeous it all
looks on each separate Squarespace site. Coupled
with the perfect sounds, the ad creates a jaw-dropping feast for the
senses, and a very compelling argument to sign up for the service.

Visuals have the power to


propel an everyday story into
an extraordinary experience.

When our senses become overwhelmed, we feel fascinated and inspired


and we want to share that feeling. Thats a powerful response,
especially when it comes to your brand and content marketing.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Key takeaways

1
Dont be afraid of the
tactile. Choose images
that people can almost
touch.
When selecting visual content for
the web, it is a great opportunity
to deliver a sensory experience
to your audience. Pay attention to
images with textures that viewers
can identify. Select images with
detail and allow your audience to
build an emotional, recognizable
experience with your content.

2
Leverage visual content
to create intrigue and
drive clicks.
While every image should not
adhere to this rule, it is a fun
way to drive clicks and play
with visuals. When selecting
imagery with high detail, you
can crop these images in a way
that interests your audience, but
encourages them to learn more.
Just remember, the cropped
image still must be able to
stand on its own.

3
Create a sensory
experience in your images
by highlighting details
and imperfections as well
as large scenes a viewer
can get lost in consider
the micro and the macro
in your visual imagery.
Imperfections in photographs
touch on both authenticity and
sensory. They are things that
people can feel and relate to. Let
certain imperfections add to your
style and narrative.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

114891552 / Martin Schuh

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NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

In every story ever told, a powerful


character has fueled the narrative. These
figures embody an array of personas that
have remained more or less the same for
thousands of years. Archetypes are written
in our DNA and are just as powerful today
as they were at the dawn of humanity.

173160722 / MoMo Productions

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NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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83% of human learning is visual.


Source: hp.com/large/ipg/assets/bus-solutions/power-of-visual-communication.pdf

They have been used as the main elements of storytelling


throughout human history. Carl Jung, who was the first to
explore and define archetypes, believed that all of mankinds
most influential ideas boiled down to these character traits,
which allow us to use our senses to facilitate recognition and
foster connections.

The most relevant branding archetypes, for instance, are Caregiver,


Jester, Lover, Outlaw, Explorer, Creator, Hero, Magician, Sage, Ruler,
Innocent and Everyman. These have evolved from a traditional
set of classic characters and storylines that are still just as
powerful today and can be used as inspiration to build powerful
communication strategies. Through understanding the archetypal
stories that shape our culture and values, brands can create more
engaging content and better connect with their audiences.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

173160722 / MoMo Productions

482147865 / Jasper Cole

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475130285 / Cavan Images

148963120 / Tara Moore

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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The sweet spot happens when you


find an image that taps into something
ancient, timeless and universal, yet is
incredibly contemporary.
Pam Grossman, Getty Images Director of Visual Trends

So then lets ask ourselves, what does the modern woman look like?
Evolution hasnt stopped shes different than shes ever looked
before, and yet she is the same. Traditionally, she may have been the
Caregiver. Today, shes a little bit of everything, all rolled into one.
Her complexity speaks to a broader audience, helping carry her voice
farther than ever before.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Lean In has both embraced and


redefined the idea of the Archetype.
The Lean In movement is making serious waves when
it comes to constructing an image of the new woman.
Partnering with Getty Images, LeanIn.org aims to create
a library of images that empower women to take on the
future at their fullest
potential, instead of
using visuals to assign
them the same roles
theyve had to play
for centuries. Lean In
author and founder
Sheryl Sandberg has
said, You cant be what
you cant see. This
project remedies just
that. The popularity
of the ever-growing collection continues to soar, depicting
women in a widening array of professions, styles and
situations, effectively creating a mirror for the possibilities
that do exist and can exist, if only we imagine them.

Seeing a part of yourself


or something familiar in
a visual is the first step
toward evoking emotion,
which is the first driver of
behavioral change.

When you look at an image, try and identify the characters


you see within it. What will they mean to different people
within different demographics? What are the connotations
they present today, versus five or ten years ago? Give
your viewers something they can relate to and watch the
connections form.
What does a woman look like today? Shes a mother, but
shes also an artist. Shes a caregiver, but shes also a badass.
Shes a goddess who looks after her family and serves her
country, too. She brings new life into the world, and she
works a 9-5 to boot. Shes snapping selfies and saving lives.
Shes strong, shes independent in a word, she is limitless.
When you look at an image, try and identify the characters
you see within it. What will they mean to different people
within different demographics?
Give your viewers something they can relate to and watch
the connections form. Seeing a part of yourself or something
familiar in a visual is the first step toward evoking emotion,
which is the first driver of behavioral change.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Key takeaways

1
Create an aspirational
persona for your brand
move beyond demographic
and think about emotional
connection.
If your brand was a person, who
would that person be? How would
they talk? What stores would they
shop at? What would they read?
What would they do on a Saturday?
Understanding your brands
persona is key to understanding
the people that should represent
your brand in images.

Create personas for your


target audience.

You dont need to embrace


dated stereotypes.

What archetypes does your


audience embody? Are they
open-minded adventurers? The
best moms on earth? What
motivates and drives them
and how does your brand help
them meet their goals? Defining
the personas for your audience
is key to understanding the
images and people that will
resonate with them.

When selecting images, always


perform a gut check. Does the
image of the person articulate a
stereotype? Does the image feel
dated in terms of its political
stance? Images of people are
powerful, but with power also
comes responsibility. You dont
want to make the mistake of
selecting an image that feels like
a 1950s advertisement for
cleaning supplies.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

1B011590_034 / BBC Universal

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NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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We happen to be living through one of the most


exciting eras of history, and nothing reminds us
more of this than a powerful visual. This is an
age of globalization and uprising, of revolution
and new ideals. Cultural relevancy is on everybodys minds and lips. Thats why its vital to
keep on top of the game and ahead of the crowd,
delivering localized content in real-time.

483211641 / AAMIR QURESHI & Staff

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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44% of users are more likely to engage with brands if they post pictures.
Sources: fastcompany.com/3000794/rise-visual-social-media, slideshare.net/performics_us/performics-life-on-demand-2012-summary-deck

Today, we have nearly 200 years worth of


stunning photographs and moving images
that continue to construct meaning for
moments gone by, giving them life long
after theyre gone. The difference between
a great photo and a forgettable one is an
instant gut reaction you know it when you
see it. Thats why its vital to keep on top of
the game and ahead of the crowd, delivering
localized content in real-time.

Know your audience and trust them to open


their minds. When it comes to marketing,
viewers need to feel a connection with the
brand through some regional or cultural
relevance, while the brand maintains global
appeal. How can you choose visuals that
highlight regional culture while tapping into
global human values?

To connect with audiences, choose images


that capture a moment in real time and make
relevant connections with how we live our
lives today. The best visuals are immediate
and timeless effortlessly and simultaneously.
The image that speaks to each generation
is constantly changing, and visual producers
need to be on top of that evolution. Whats
coming next? How can you connect with
your audiences to anticipate the next
visual trend?

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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160768277 / Anders Andersson

188079635 / Nick Dolding

170956840 / Cultura/DUEL

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Its necessary to take risks, even if they


may alienate some of your audience.
Its always good business practice to
be progressive and assume that people
are going to catch up.
Pam Grossman, Getty Images Director of Visual Trends

Why? Because its inevitable. Time waits for no one, so even the stragglers will
come around sooner or later. With so much beauty in the world, its a shame
that its still necessary to overcome our differences. Cultures and disparate
ideals are colliding, and they need to be embraced. Image-makers and visual
trendsetters hold the power here the power of influence.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Honey Maid embraces cultural relevance


and takes a stand for modern families.
Honey Maids most recent campaign is a great
example of progress in visual marketing. In 30
seconds, the once old-fashioned graham cracker
brand succeeds in placing itself at the forefront
of one of the countrys most compelling topics:
the evolving definition of family. The campaign
celebrates all kinds of families real-life families
and sheds a new light on our concept of
wholesome to encompass every possible kind,
including single, military,
homosexual and interracial
parents.

Guide your audience into the


future with true-to-life images
that reflect the changing face
of the real world.

The incredibly moving


and on-point campaign
illustrates cultural
relevancy like no other,
and triggers viewers
emotions in a deeply heart-warming way. And for
all the haters out there? Honey Maid anticipated
their resistance, and fired back with a followup spot in which two artists created something
beautiful out of their negative responses,

simultaneously highlighting the fact that the


love the ad received greatly outweighed the
hate. Thats an example of a foreword-thinking
brand that covers all of its bases and has a deep
understanding of its audience and the world that
we live in. Powerful branding follows change
extraordinary branding leads us towards it.
New visions and realities are constantly coming
into light new kinds of people, new kinds of
families, new kinds of societies. All kinds of
bodies, all kinds of skin. All kinds of men and
women ever-evolving towards something better
and brighter.
As a brand, its your responsibility to take a stand.
Stand on the side of progress.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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Key takeaways

1
Lean in to imagery that
is bold, takes risks, and
pushes the boundaries of
cultural acceptance.
When taking a stand, always
consider your target audience. How
can you select images that are
relevant to them and their beliefs?
How can you use imagery to
stand behind your target audience
and take a stance for what they
believe in? Just make sure that the
stance you take addresses your
target audience and brand persona
appropriately.

2
Be in the moment an
image or Snapchat may
not last forever, but it can
evoke real emotion and
impact.
Ephemera is becoming the norm.
But just because it doesnt last
forever, doesnt mean it shouldnt
be thoughtful. By jumping on the
real-time bandwagon and creating
thoughtful imagery, you can build
emotional connections with your
audience. Relevancy is not just
about the image itself, its about
the context the image exists in.

3
Know where the line is.
Pay attention to the moment in
time, and be sensitive to it. If there
is breaking news that affects your
audience or a global audience it
is not the time to leverage images
for self promotion.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

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NewsCred / newscred.com

Getty Images / gettyimages.com

NewsCred is the leading content marketing platform. Pairing


cutting-edge software with world-class content, NewsCred
transforms brands into storytellers.

Getty Images is a leading provider of digital media worldwide,


creating and distributing a range of assets from royalty-free stock
photography and editorial images to footage, music and multimedia
that help communicators around the globe tell their stories.

NewsCreds Content Marketing Cloud provides the easiest endto-end solution for content planning, creation, publishing and
analytics. In one place, brands gain unprecedented access to the
worlds largest content marketplace, including licensed content
from over 4,000 publishers and original content from NewsCreds
award-winning journalist network.
Through NewsCred, global brands like Pepsi, P&G, Dell, General
Electric and AIG have seen explosive growth in social sharing,
engagement and lead generation.
Founded in 2008 by Shafqat Islam, Iraj Islam and Asif Rahman,
NewsCred has offices in New York, London and Dhaka and is
backed by FirstMark Capital, Mayfield Fund, IA Ventures, Greycroft
Partners and others.

Images
Their extensive image and stock illustration offering spans
everything from conceptual rights-managed and royalty-free creative
images to up-to-the-minute editorial coverage including news, sport
and celebrity photos and timeless vintage photography.
Footage
From premium stock footage to daily entertainment video, Getty
Images has commercial-quality clips to fit every project. Choose from
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licensing.
Resources
Along with industry-leading images, footage and music, they have an
array of tools and services to make your job easier from search tips
and trend research to blogs and podcasts that help you keep up on
the latest in visual culture.

NewsCred + Getty Images present The Power of Visual Storytelling

187863969 / Thomas Barwick

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